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'If you do return, O Yisra'el,' declares YHWH, 'return to Me. And if you remove your abominations from My presence, and cease straying,
and shall swear, 'As YHWH lives,' in truth, in right-ruling, and in righteousness - then nations shall bless themselves in Him, and they shall boast in Him!'
For this is what YHWH said to the men of Yehudah and Yerushalayim, 'Break up your tillable ground, and do not sow among thorns.
'Circumcise yourselves unto YHWH, and take away the foreskins of your hearts, you men of Yehudah and inhabitants of Yerushalayim, lest My wrath come forth like fire and burn, with none to quench it, because of the evil of your deeds.'
Disaster From the North...
Declare in Yehudah and let it be heard in Yerushalayim, and say, `Blow the ram`s horn in the land. Cry aloud and say, `Gather yourselves, and let us go into the walled city.`
'Lift up the banner toward Tsiyon. Be strong, do not stand still! For I am bringing evil from the north, and great destruction.'
'A lion has come up from his bush, and the destroyer of nations is on his way. He has set out from his place to make your land a ruin. Your cities are laid waste, without inhabitant.
'For this, gird yourself with sackcloth, lament and wail. For the burning displeasure of YHWH has not turned back from us.
'And in that day it shall be,' declares YHWH, 'that the heart of the sovereign shall perish, and the heart of the heads. And the priests shall be astonished, and the prophets wonder.'
Then I said, 'Ah, Master YHWH! Truly, You have greatly deceived this people and Yerushalayim, saying, 'Peace is for you,' whereas the sword reaches to the heart.'
At that time it shall be said to this people and to Yerushalayim, 'A scorching wind of the bare heights blows in the wilderness toward the daughter of My people, not to fan or to cleanse.
'A wind too strong for this shall come for Me. Now it is I who speak judgments against them.
'See, he comes up like clouds, and his chariots like a whirlwind. His horses shall be swifter than eagles. Woe to us, for we shall be ravaged!'
O Yerushalayim, wash your heart from evil, and be saved. Till when would your wicked thoughts remain within you?
For a voice is declaring from Dan, and is proclaiming trouble from Mount Ephrayim:
'Announce to the nations, look, proclaim against Yerushalayim, that besiegers are coming from a distant land and raise their voice against the cities of Yehudah.
'Like keepers of a field they are against her all around, because she has rebelled against Me,' declares YHWH.
'Your ways and your deeds have brought this upon you. This is your evil, because it is bitter, because it has reached into your heart.'
O my inward parts, my inward parts! I am in pain! O the walls of my heart! My heart pounds in me, I am not silent. For you have heard, O my being, the sound of the ram's horn, a shout of battle!
Destruction upon destruction is cried, for all the land is ravaged. Suddenly my tents are ravaged - my curtains in a moment.
How long shall I see a banner, and hear the sound of the ram's horn?
'For My people are foolish, they have not known Me. They are stupid children, and they have no understanding. They are wise to do evil, but to do good they have no knowledge.'
I looked at the earth, and saw it was formless and empty. And the heavens, they had no light.
I looked at the mountains, and saw they shook, and all the hills were swaying.
I looked, and saw there was no man, and all the birds of the heavens had fled.
I looked, and saw the garden land was a wilderness, and all its cities were broken down at the presence of YHWH, by His burning displeasure.
For thus said YHWH, 'All the earth shall be a ruin, but I shall not make a complete end.
'On account of this, let the earth mourn and the heavens above be dark, because I have spoken, because I have purposed and shall not relent, nor do I turn back from it.'
All the city is fleeing from the noise of the horsemen and bowmen. They shall go into bushes and climb up on the rocks. All the city is forsaken, and no one is dwelling in it.
And when you are ravaged, what would you do? Though you put on crimson, though you adorn yourself with ornaments of gold, though you enlarge your eyes with paint, you adorn yourself in vain. Your lovers despise you, they seek your life.
For I have heard a voice as of a woman in labour, the distress as of her who brings forth her first child, the voice of the daughter of Tsiyon! She bewails herself, she spreads out her hands, saying, 'Woe to me, for my being faints because of murderers!'